dog boarding

Boarding Kennels vs. Leaving Your Dog At A Friend’s

What is the Best Option For Your Furry Friend?

There’s nothing worse than spending heaps of money on a much-anticipated vacation only to worry constantly about where your beloved pooch is and how they are doing.

You feel guilty for leaving your dog behind, and being separated can be stressful for both of you. So what do you do? Do you place your dog with a trusted friend or family member? Or should you leave it to the professionals and board your dog?

In this blog post, we’ll look at why boarding kennels can be a better option than a friend or pet sitter, how to choose a boarding kennel and how to prepare your dog (and you!) for boarding.

Why You Should Board Your Dog

Friendship is a lovely thing, but it can only go so far. Your friendship might be sorely tested when your dog rips into your friend’s home! In addition, there are certain things that a professional facility can provide that a friend or family member cannot, regardless of how attentive your pet sitter or dog’s caregiver is.

  • Professional care: When you board your dog at a reputable facility, you can rest assured that trained professionals will be caring for your dog.
  • Consistency: Dogs thrive on routine and consistency. When you board your dog, they will follow a routine that includes feeding, exercise and playtime.
  • Socialization: Boarding facilities offer valuable socialization opportunities, and there’s no such thing as too much socialization!
  • Avoid straining friendship: Leaving your dog with a friend can strain your relationship, especially if your friend is unfamiliar with handling dogs. Also, if anything goes wrong, it can lead to awkwardness and potentially damage the friendship.
  • Prevent accidents: Dogs can be unpredictable, and accidents can happen. Boarding your dog in a secure facility can help prevent them from escaping, getting into toxic substances or causing damage to your friend's property.

How To Choose A Boarding Kennel

Choosing the right kennel is crucial to your dog’s well-being (and to your sanity!) Here are a few things to look out for.

Inspect The Facility

If possible, spend significant time touring the facilities and meeting the staff. Better yet, bring the pooch! Visiting a dog boarding facility in person gives you a sense of the environment and the team. This can help your dog become familiar with the facility and feel more comfortable during their stay.

Also, by visiting a boarding facility, you can see first-hand how the dogs are treated, what kind of care they receive and the overall cleanliness of the facility. This can help you make an informed decision about where to board your dog.

Meeting the staff at a dog boarding facility allows you to ask questions, voice any concerns and get a sense of their level of expertise and experience in handling dogs.

A visit to a dog boarding facility allows you to see the kennels, play areas and any additional amenities offered, such as dog spa services, training programs and any extra services that will benefit your dog. This can help you determine if the facility is a good fit for your dog's needs.

Check On The Boarding Requirements

A reputable boarding facility should have stringent entry requirements, some of which are non-negotiable.

All boarding kennels should require that dogs have up-to-date vaccinations, including rabies, distemper and Bordetella (kennel cough). Some facilities may also require additional vaccinations, such as canine influenza.

Some boarding kennels require a health exam from a veterinarian before admission. This ensures the dog is healthy and free from contagious diseases or parasites.

In addition, boarding kennels may require that dogs have a certain temperament and be well-socialized with other dogs and people. This ensures a safe and peaceful environment for all dogs at the facility.

Lastly, some boarding kennels may have age and health restrictions, so it is important to check with the facility beforehand if your dog is a senior or has any health issues.

Medical Services

Many boarding kennels have an in-house medical team or are affiliated with a nearby vet in case of emergencies. Dogs can experience injuries or illnesses, even in a safe environment. Having medical services on-site at a boarding kennel ensures that emergencies can be quickly and effectively addressed, minimizing the risk of further harm to your dog.

Many dogs require medication for various health issues, and having medical services on site can ensure that medications are appropriately administered as prescribed by a veterinarian.

Dogs with chronic health conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease, may require monitoring during their stay at a boarding kennel. Medical services can provide this monitoring and ensure that any necessary treatments or interventions are administered as needed.

Having medical services on-site can enhance the overall quality of care a boarding kennel provides. Trained medical professionals can offer more care and attention to dogs, ensuring they receive the best care during their stay.

Preparing Your Dog For The Boarding Kennel

Preparing your dog for boarding can help ensure a smooth and stress-free experience for you and your furry friend. Here are some tips for preparing your dog for boarding:

  • Vaccinations and health checks: Ensure your dog is up-to-date on all necessary vaccinations and has had a recent health check with your veterinarian. Provide the boarding kennel copies of your dog's medical records and essential medications.
  • Familiarization: Introduce your dog to the boarding kennel beforehand by taking them for a visit or a trial stay. This can help your dog become familiar with the facility and the staff and reduce anxiety during their stay.
  • Personal items: Bring familiar items from home, such as bedding, toys or a favorite blanket. This can help your dog feel comfortable in a new environment.
  • Exercise: Give your dog plenty of exercise before their stay at the boarding kennel. This can help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation during their visit.
  • Packing checklist: Make a checklist of everything your dog will need during their stay, such as food, treats, medication and any necessary grooming supplies.
  • Communication: Communicate your dog's specific needs or concerns to the boarding kennel staff. This can include dietary restrictions, behavior issues or medical problems.
  • Positive attitude: Stay upbeat when dropping off your dog. Dogs can pick up on their owner's emotions, so remaining calm and positive can help reduce any anxiety your dog may feel.